Josefin Hååg, Interior Stylist, living in stunning Stockholm, and a major inspiration in every way, her work is delicious and captures beauty in detail and has such palpable taste, I can’t describe in words. I think she has a “je ne sais quoi” you can almost put your finger on…
As an Artist I have seen and personally curated a lot of Art, I do call styling a form of Art. It’s creating a work that expresses many aspects of our lives and who we are.
I’m sure styling is a natural aspect of your life, meaning it’s present constantly in your everyday, I think I can relate to you this way…. From the flowers you bring home to the food you prepare, there’s always a sense of arranging things in a way. Would you agree?
Absolutely! I have, as long as I can remember loved beautiful things. I think that surrounding yourself with objects or interiors that you find beautiful has nothing to do with shallowness. I always get upset when people think that an interest in interior design is shallow. I would say the it’s the opposite. The Interiors and environments that we surround ourselves with, our own home, and the love that we put into it, is what makes us feel happy, calm, inspired etc… And I do think that a beautiful bouquet of flowers on the table, a vintage wine glas that you have picked out and really love, or a painting on the wall that makes you smile, makes all the difference. Hopefully everytime you see them, it makes you happy.
Can you define your style or what you look for in a style?
I think it changes every now and then, not my actual style maybe, I would say that stays the same. But I guess like everyone who has a creative job, you get inspired all the time and I find my self obsessing over things for periods at a time. But my style, if I have to put it down in words, I would say is very basic. I like natural materials, a lot of tactile elements, wood, tiles, ceramic, textiles, glass etc. And even though its becoming a “trend”. I do think that one of the most important things in a home is personality. I think that the most soulful homes are the ones that have a mix between new stuff and old. Where you can almost see who lives there by the choices that they made. And I kind of think that sums up me too.
Right now I have three main influences that Im trying to combine as well in my brain as in my home. And that is a touch of french vintage. Old wooden cabinets with glass doors, silverware, wooden chairs, rustic and authentic, a bit of a country feel I guess. Danish classics with that magical clean scandinavian feeling. Modern chairs with rattan, mogensen furniture, soft tones, wood, and a very clear Scandinavian design esthetics. And also the japanese minimalism. I am obsessed by japanese ceramics, textiles, the authentic craftsmanship that goes in to everything they do, the whole feeling of everything japanese.
But I think the most important thing when it comes to style, is that it feels believable and authentic!
Being true to your own background and Authenticity is a real thing for me, I believe style cannot be copied or taken from a different place, it’s very ours and speaks our language. As you said, it always is the same.
What’s most inspiring in your work? Or what are your main influences?
The most inspiring must be that I never know what’s gonna come. The variation and challenge in every week. To always get to be creative, which off course can also be a stressful element, but most of the time it’s just fun, and to get a very definite end result of everything you do. To start with a first thought or idea for a project, and to then have that picture with the end result in your hand when you’re done is an amazing feeling.
Do you find that your ideas evolve every day?
I hope they do. What I have learned is that the more you do the more your brain is “in the game” and I find it easier to work a lot and keep the creativity flowing. Even if it’s just me making a still life for the blog or meeting a friend and talking about an idea that we can develop together. It’s better to just do, do do. And to never stop thinking or believing in you ideas. And most importantly, it’s ok to make mistakes and try stuff that maybe doesn’t work, but then at least you tried it. Some things you have to learn the hard way.
I call it experience.
What makes you jump out of joy?
Well, that’s a lot of things, of course. But I love to travel, that gives me so much inspiration on so many levels. I love to find beautiful restaurants, shops, looking at people and seeing new places. And I guess that it’s also the small things that makes me jump of joy. It could be me finding a hidden gem, like a shop or a café, a beautiful find on a flee market or having an amazing food experience in a restaurant. Since food and cooking is one of my big passions as well.
You live in urban Stockholm, I have to admit, I would not mind living there… How does this influence your work and aesthetic?
I lived in Stockholm my whole life, so it’s the only place I call home. And yes, Stockholm has many beautiful and inspiring places, and lately I feel like more shops & cafes are popping up all over, which is wonderful. I think there is so many creative people in this town, and I do get inspired every single day by that.
Cafe Pom and Flora
Many people don’t realize what a production it is to work on a photoshoot and the travel it involves to work as an interior stylist, do you want to share more?
Yes, even though I haven’t worked to long as an stylist myself, I’ve been assisting for a couple of years of and on so I have been on many different productions, big and small, from start to finish. And the basics are the same I would say. As a stylist you get a project and then you start planning for it. And like you say, people only see the end result, the picture. But that’s only like 10 percent of everything. Most of it is planning, sketching, scouting for props, logistics, logistics, logistics, packing, unpacking, and a then little bit of styling as well of course. That is also what is so good about being an assistant for a while, because you get to learn how the profession works, and also get to figure out if you are up for everything that it takes to be a stylist if your goal is to be one yourself.
I agree, It’s always seen from the outside and the final result. In my own experience it’s always worth that 10 percent.
Favorite shops in your town?
Sometimes I think there’s not enough interior shops in stockholm and I guess as a stylist you visit these shops all the time for work so maybe our need is a bit bigger. But we do have lovely little shops all over, some of my favorites right now are: Dusty Deco, Snickarbacken 7, Garbo interiors, Konsthantverkarna, Kaolin, Grandpa and Christoffers blommor.
Agreed, and can’t wait to come visit and go shopping..
What would your dream home look like? No limits.
I love buildings from the early 1900s, with fishbone floors, double doors, high ceilings and large old windows. Right now I would say moody colors on the walls. A lot of different shades of grey, brown, beige and blue. A lot of different materials and textures, a big kitchen with room for a lot of cooking and people. Old wooden cabinets where I can store all of my ceramic, glass etc. And a big bathroom with a bathtub in the middle. Style wise I love the mix between french rustic and danish minimalism. A lot of paintings and art on the walls. And maybe some design classics and one or two luxuries elements like an expensive lamp, carpet, chair or something like that. Hopefully this is something that you can build up as you go, I believe in only buying things that you really love and want to keep for a long time. And realize and be ok with the fact that it will take some time to build your dream home.
Olala… I love that..
Current projects you’re working on?
I just started freelancing again full time, and I have many projects and Ideas that I want to start planning! I will be freelancing as a stylist for Fantastic Frank regularly starting this week, so Im really looking forward to that! and then I have a couple of bigger projects in April and some upcoming work in Residence Magazine pretty soon as well. After that I am just so exited to see what the future brings!
Im sure you will really enjoy that, projects are always a way to grow and learn. Fantastik Frank sounds amazing to me.
Josefin and Fantastik Frank
And lastly, what would your advice be to other stylists?
I would say passion and hard work! I don’t think you would succeed without one or the other. I also believe in doing it right from the beginning. See if you can get an internship or assisting job with an interior stylist or a magazine. And be humble and willing to learn. Also be prepared that it may take some time before you are there yourself. Because it really doesn’t matter if you can make a beautiful still life if you don’t know how the business works, after all, that’s gonna be what builds up you self-esteem and then you know when you are ready to take the leap and start exploring your own carrier. And also like I said before, do as much creative things as you can, as often as possible. Practice makes perfect. Make still lives or compositions, start an instagram account or a blog to collect your inspiration and also maybe figure out what’s your style and sense of esthetics are. And most of all believe in your self and don’t give up if it’s your dream!
Thank you so much for taking time to chat with me, Congratulations on your 30th birthday! well celebrated in Paris. It’s always a pleasure to work with you and looking forward to visiting when in Stockholm. And to all you do!